Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Nuptuals of the Baby Brother Part 4: Trip to the Zoo

The day after the wedding I went to the zoo with some family. We had a good time and the back of my neck just finished peeling from the burn. (Poor Shanna, hers was WAY worse). Here are a few shots of the people...the animal shots are over on my photo blog.

Here is me with my brother Bryce, his wife and kids and my SIL Michelle.

Grandma and Grandpa wrangling the walking grandkids.

Blaine pushing Bryce in the stroller.

We rode the carousel and Blaine didn't want to ride one of the cute animals, he wanted to sit in the peacock chair.

Austin was NOT impressed.

Nuptuals of the Baby Brother Part 3: The Wedding

The wedding was beautiful even though it rained and rained and rained. The weather let up a bit for the start of the ceremony, but started to drip a little just a few minutes in so it was cut short. It was probably better because the ceremony officiator was getting a little too religious for my VERY non-religious brother. The reception was beautiful, it was great to see a lot of family and friends that I haven't seen since my last brother got married.

Their cake was beautiful. The same lady who did our cake did this one. Ours was fantastic and so was this one. All the layers were different flavors, there was a chocolate layer, cheesecake layer, strawberry layer, mmm....

Here is the groom's cake. Fits my brother perfect.

The bride and her mom and her bridesmaids.

Me and my handsome brothers.

My brother Bryce's cute little family. Blaine was the ring bearer. Austin wore the tux that Blaine wore to Bryce's wedding. They were so cute all dressed up in their tuxes.

There was an old fashioned ice cream station. And any of you who know me know of my love for frozen dairy products.

Michelle likes ice cream too. ;)

Me and my dad.

The cake: civilized.

The cake: not.

For the garter Brad decided to do something fun like we had done. (Nathan pulled out a rubber chicken and a 48FFF red velvet bra before he 'found' the garter') Brad called me the day before and we decided on a collapsible light saber and some seriously funky black satin granny panties. The best part?? Kass had NO idea. You should have seen her face.

Me and the women of my mom's family....well, a good chunk of them. L to R: Aunt Kim, Mom, Grandma, Me, Aunt Linda (whose basement I lived in my first year of college)

Brad and Kass at the back of the stretch expedition limo.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Walking Softly

The other night the lady who lives in the condo below us emailed me. No kidding....and I swear I didn't change ONE word, I just cut and pasted the text (I didn't copy over the footprint clipart that she put in the message...thought I'd leave that out). Just a little background: we don't wear shoes in our apartment. They come off right inside the door and go on as we're walking out. I try and always be conscious of our neighbors, I don't play the piano - which makes me sad :( - I don't stomp around, I keep the volume down on the TV and radio, don't take baths late at night (I'm worried the tub jets will be too loud), I yell at Besta if he walks around a lot (his claws make sounds on the hardwood floor) etc. I thought we were being VERY considerate.

Without further ado:

Hello Holly & Nathan –
Happy Summer to You ! I’m wondering if you’re walking heavier the past 2 or 3 weeks or if I’m just imagining it. Maybe I’m just getting more tired of hearing footsteps on my ceiling. As I told you before you moved in, it sounds like thunder even if you walk lightly without shoes on. It DOES help if you don’t put the full weight of your body on your heal with each step. I’m guessing that having a lot of furnishings has kept down the echo and that any type of carpeting muffles the thumping. Maybe you’ve become comfortable living here and thought I wasn’t noticing any noise. I’m very happy if you’ve become comfortable living here and don’t want to rain on your parade. I will continue to say, though, that all soft foot-stepping is greatly appreciated. Please do some kind of rhythmic tap on the floor if I’m being too loud down here, okay?
Good Cheer & Peace to You,
Deb in 305

Can you believe it? I'm not sure what we should do...get 6" padded slippers to slide around on? Slither around on our bellies? Install high-tech harnesses on tracks on the ceiling?


So I had a corporate recruiter contact me yesterday afternoon and I had an interview with her today. You know it is awfully humbling to have to beg for a job with an interviewer who is five years your junior. They didn't have a job for me right now, but they wanted to pre-screen me so that if something does comes in they know I'm not a freak.

On the way to this interview another corporate recruiter called me, I told her I was just getting on the freeway and asked if I could call her back. She said she'd call me this afternoon...I hope she really does call me back.

Keep your fingers and toes crossed that one of these interviews pans out into something that will help pay the rent. :) This is one (of the few) thing(s) I hate about the military. It makes it hard to move up the corporate ladder when you have to change jobs every 2-3 years. I have thought a lot about opening up my own photography studio, but you do the best if you can build a clientele and with me moving so much that makes it hard to build up a 'fan base'. I need to work on building a career that could move with me, but that requires school, which requires $$, which we are VERY short on. Nathan can transfer the GI Bill to me, but not until he's got 6 years in...which we are about 18 months away. There is some little program out there that will give military spouses some cash for school, but it won't go too far here in Chicago and I have to work...to pay the mortgage on the house we no longer live in (argh), and then catch us up from this road of financial ruin we've gone down (argh).

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Nuptuals of the Baby Brother Part 2: Trip to the Hairdresser

I wasn't part of the wedding and neither were my two SIL's so we decided to go have our hair all done up just because. There is a beauty college relatively close and so we went there because it is cheap.
Here's me with my two girls. My hair was in a loose, curly sideswept bun. ala 1940's...only with a modern twist.

Shanna and her girl. Shanna had a cool braided headband looking thing with a low set, wide, curly bun.

Michelle and her girl...who she knew from high school. Michelle's was curly and half up.
Mom and one of her THREE hairdressers. They really struggled with her hair. It was changed so many times and it was not good. She ended up just re-washing it and styling it normal for the wedding.
The whole time we were getting our hair done it was raining, and not just raining, MONSOON raining. So when we left we got garbage bags to put over our heads. I wish I would have gotten a picture of that!

Nuptuals of the Baby Brother Part 1: The Rehearsal Dinner

(the next few posts will be picture heavy...just to warn you)

Last week I flew back to Utah for my baby brother's wedding. I can honestly say that I never thought I'd see the day where he would get married. He is a very free-spirited, stubborn guy. The girl he married is perfect for him, and she fits well in our family too.

The night before the wedding my parents hosted a pre-wedding picnic/rehearsal dinner at a park near their old house. My mom picked me up at the airport and we went right into preparing for the dinner. It had been raining for a week so when we showed up at the bowery and the tables and benches were all wet I knew that the awning overhead obviously didn't provide much cover from rain. (And to be honest, who would've known...Utah rarely gets rain...I mean it is in the desert afterall) We went to the store and got flowers, vases, posterboard and balloons for signs, etc. Shanna and I made the centerpieces...well, I picked out the colors and she built them. I loved the colors, they looked like sherbert.

For those of you that don't know my brother, he is a bit of a redneck...and he will be the first to admit it too. He wanted camouflage EVERYTHING for the wedding. Cake. Tuxes. Bowties. Centerpieces. Get-away car. EVERYTHING. Kassidy said no (thank heavens), but we thought for the rehearsal dinner we could throw a little camo in there and make him happy without crossing the line into redneck territory.

Here are Brad and Kass. Yes, my brother wore a faded Coors Light t-shirt to his rehearsal dinner. Um, redneck.

Here's a view of the bowery. I didn't get a great picture of the tables before everyone started showing up, but they were hot pink with a strip of camo about halfway down. The meal was catered by Maddox, and it was yummy. (We ate leftovers until I flew back to IL).

This is me and my parents and my Aunt Barbara. It is kinda creepy how much my dad looks like his sister.

My dad's parents. This one had to make it in...even with the funny faces. Why you ask? Because my grandma isn't flipping me the bird. Yep, she's that grandma.

My cousin Darby and her two kids.

My Aunt Kim (Darby's mom) and my mom's mom.

My brother Mitch and my cute nephew Blaine.

The rain held off for the entire dinner and after it was all done and cleaned up the girls went to the mall to find Michelle something to wear the next day for the wedding. We ended up at my parent's house that night playing games until like 1am.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009


I will update you all soon on my very adventurous last week (plane trips and wedding stuff and the zoo, oh my!) but first I need something. Our house still hasn't sold (five months on the market) and I still have yet to find a job (going on three months searching). The combination of the two is putting us in serious financial trouble and if something doesn't change pretty quick we will be in big, deep do do. Seriously. Like the B word. (which would surely complicate adoption later on...)

Our realtor is having an open house this Saturday. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers. Pray that someone will see the house and want to buy it asap. Pray that one of the dozens of resumes I send out EVERY week will be seen by someone who will want to hire me.
Thank you. I know prayers work, I just know it.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

Happy Father's Day to my dad. I take after him in many ways: my stubborn streak, low blood sugar grumpiness, hoarding...just to name a few. He taught all of us kids to be hard workers, and although we tease him a lot about making us pick up rocks I know we are all grateful for the work ethic we developed. My dad is a great guy and I hope that when we get kids Nathan can be just as good of a father as he is.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Hey. You ever have those days where you want to throw your computer against the wall? Ya, that's where I'm at right now.
My brother is getting married this week and I have been hard at work on their wedding video. I have been editing photos and cutting clips and spending altogether WAY too much time in front of my laptop. I finished the video this afternoon, I had Nathan look it over and make sure it looked ok. I don't have a DVD burner, but Nathan does so all I had to transfer the video to his computer. Sounds easy, no? Um, well it isn't. Lets just say that I am at my wits end, we have tried every method we can think of but we just keep getting error messages. Grrr. I want to scream and cry all at once because now I am back at the beginning. I have to redo the ENTIRE video.
Just had to vent, back I go to iMovie. (I love my Mac, I love my Mac, I love my Mac....)

Friday, June 12, 2009

Just passin' along a little knowledge...cause I care

Since we are on a tight budget here in Chi Town I have been scouring the internet on ways to save money and find deals. I have found a couple things that are worth sharing.

Free Jewelry: This site gives jewelry away for FREE! The catch? You must pay for shipping, which is $6.99 and you can't combine purchases. BUT it is sterling silver and gemstones. My mom has ordered some from the site and says the jewelry is beautiful. They only offer four pieces at a time and they change every few minutes, so if you see something snag it quick!

Want free haircuts? I don't even remember where I got this tip, but I just scored an appointment for a free haircut so I thought I'd pass it on. On craigslist there is a section called 'Services' and sub-category for 'Beauty'. If you check it OFTEN new and upcoming stylists will post ads for free haircuts, facials, etc. They need to build up their portfolios and so they offer free services. You have to act quick, hence the checking OFTEN. I have responded to several and finally scored the free one just yesterday. I have my appointment on Monday so I'll let you know how it goes.

Shopping High for great deals and freebies. She posts freebies, and items that are on super great deals. Most are online, but occasionally it is coupons for a free item that you have to take to the store. I have scored free antibacterial stuff at Bath & Body Works and free frozen lemonaid at Corner Bakery just to name a couple.

Fantabulously Frugal is similiar to Shopping High. They post coupons and freebies and such, but it seems that the majority of her posts are geared to when retailers are having great online and in-store sales.

Betty Crocker - You can print coupons right from their website and the best part is that you select the coupons you want and only print them and not a bunch that you won't use.

Pillsbury - Same as Betty Crocker. The coupons on this site change about once a week (I think) so keep an eye on them.

Diamond Shark - This site has one deal every day. It is always jewelry, it might be a watch, a pair of earrings, a ring...but it is ALWAYS a steal. Name brands are a regular occurance and the shipping is always free.

So there are a few. I am also looking to increase my shopping saavy...any of you out there have some tips to share?

Free Chocolate Friday

Don't forget...free chocolate Friday. I have done this once and got my coupon in the mail yesterday. You can get up to four coupons. Come on, you can't say no to free chocolate.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Land of a Thousand Lakes

Nathan had a three day weekend (which NEVER happens in the Navy Band in the summer) so we decided to pack up the dog and head up to see his sister in Minnesota. The drive was six hours and isn't too bad, but it isn't something I would want to do often! One of Nathan's other brothers was also visiting so we got a nice double dose of family. We hung out, talked, ate, played games, gave Nathan a mani/pedi, went to church and went to the Spam Museum. Yep, I did say Spam Museum...I swear I did not throw that in to just see if you were paying attention. Overall a great time was had by all...and most importantly, many calories were burned laughing.

Here is a plethera of pictures. If you want to see more, (because lets face it, I am freaking adorable and so is my family...not to mention there are lots of pictures of the Spam Museum should your curiosity be peaked by what magical mysteries might be hidden behind those Hormel walls) you'll have to check out my album on facebook. Not my facebook friend?? Well, whose fault is that?!?

Besta. So happy to be out of the concrete jungle. I know he doesn't look happy...in fact he looks like he could jump up and bite my face off. Maybe he's just feeling a little anxiety over doing this to me:

To tell you the truth, I am not exactly sure what happened. I was throwing the frisbee for him to fetch and one time when he brought it back to me he misjudged where I was standing and ran into/bit my leg right on the back of my knee. I am pretty sure it was on accident. Only one semi-puncture wound...my pants didn't even get a hole in them. But man oh man does it hurt! The flash washed it out a bit, so you'll just have to take my word that it is WAY more purple in person.

The girls and I took Besta on a nice long walk to a park. I was mean and made them pose for lots of pictures.

Nathan getting the full spa treatment.

Pedi. Right

Pedi. Left. I think the hairy feet and toes add to the look, no?

Uncle Nathan and all the nieces...pretty sure he clenched the favorite uncle title with this.

Showing off the mani.

Horse face. It is funny, I promise. I guess you just had to be there.

Grant hoisting away to get Spam to the troops.

Michael and Andrew packing Spam.

The whole crew at the Spam Museum. (I hope Cindy or Janus' picture turned out better, I think the tour guide lady sneezed or something when she took this one)

Lard. Yummy.

Hormel's newest Spam Recruits.

Spam Head.

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Take me out to the ball game

This past Wednesday it was Navy Day at US Cellular Field. We got hooked up with free tickets so we made the trek down to 35th Street to watch them play. I know that because of where we live we should support the other team in town...but I still had a great time cheering on the Sox. I even bought a hat. :) I'm sure this will not be our last visit to support the Sox. (even if it is the wrong color of sox...white, not red....ah well)

Pretty good seats for getting them free, eh?

Are we just not the two most adorable people you've ever seen? Aren't we? Huh? Huh?